A clear gap has emerged in the W-League as Canberra United put some distance between the rest of the league and the two leaders with a 2-0 win over Perth Glory at Percy Doyle Reserve on Saturday night.
It could have been a bad night for Canberra who almost had to make a late change to their squad as Nicole Sykes cut her hand in the change rooms pre-match but was spared as the referees agreed to hold back kick-off while she received treatment.
The match was always going to be a hard ask for Perth Glory who were missing three vital players in Collette McCallum, Kate Gill and Sasha Andrews, all out injured.
With so many key, attacking, players out Perth had no choice but to sit back and try and absorb Canberra's pressure for as long as possible and hope to sneak a goal on the counter.
A set-piece allowed Canberra the first chance of the match as Grace Gill hit a free-kick from the corner for a team mate but the effort went wide, letting Perth off the hook.
Just five minutes later Canberra were at it again and nearly found an opener as Stephanie Ochs forced a world class save out of Chantel Jones, to keep the match scoreless.
It seemed Canberra had hit the lead in the 29th minute when Kendall Fletcher beat Jones with a powerful shot, but her effort struck the post and went out for a pressure relieving goal kick.
Right before the half Canberra caught Perth napping as Lori Lindsey hit a powerful shot from distance but she couldn't catch Jones out as she tipped the ball over the bar to keep it scoreless at the break.
The pressure exerted by Canberra continued into the second half and just six minutes in their dominance told as they opened the scoring.
A corner allowed Canberra the opportunity but Ellie Brush could only find the post with her header which allowed Ashleigh Sykes to run on and slam the ball home for the opener.
On the hour mark Michelle Heyman almost had a goal as it continued to be all Canberra, when she chipped Jones but could only find the crossbar as it bounced over.
Canberra continued to just tear Perth apart but they couldn't find their second goal until stoppage time when Ochs was able to hit a goal of her own to seal the 2-0 win.